Italians on Italians
Beyond Toscano

Beer in the land of fine wine

Beer in the land of fine wine
Italy may be known for some incredible wines, but beer is just as popular as in the rest of the world. (You can probably thank the British for that – Emperor Agricola developed a taste for it there in 83AD and introduced it to Rome.) Apart from Peroni, Italy isn’t famous for its beers, but like the rest of Europe, microbreweries are increasing in popularity as people develop more diverse tastes. 
Unlike wine, where there’s a seemingly endless list of rules about what to enjoy, when and how, there’s much less snobbery among beer drinkers. There are however, some unspoken rules around beer drinking etiquette. 
The Italian concept of la bella figura (the beautiful figure), makes being drunk and disorderly frowned upon across generations, even by many young people who are heavier beer drinkers than their parents. 
There’s also the time of day to consider. While in Germany and Spain, beer is often served alongside a meal, in Italy, this is quite rare – after all, good food and fine wine are a hard combination to beat. But there’s always an exception to the rule; when it comes pizza, pairing it with a crisp lager on a warm summer’s day won’t raise an eyebrow.